ALL ABOUT HO CHI MINH MAUSOLEUM COMPLEX (OPENING HOURS – INSIDE – DRESSCODE – Entrance fee, TRANSPORT)
Ho Chi Minh (19/5/1890-2/9/1969) was the first president of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam, who dedicated his life to save the country from invaders. He was also the founder of Vietnam Communist Party.
For all Vietnamese family, he was regarded as the Great father or simply Uncle Ho.
The place was built to keep Ho Chi Minh’s body remained after he passed away so that he can somehow find contentment in seeing Vietnam united.
The place so far has had millions of tourists as well as Vietnamese people from every part of the country visiting each year.
The building was inspired by Lenin’s Mausoleum in Moscow but reflects Vietnamese architectural elements.
All the materials used for building the mausoleum were collected from many parts of the country which expresses Vietnamese people’s love to their dearest Father.
The embalmed body of Ho Chi Minh is preserved in the cooled, central hall of the mausoleum, which is protected by military honor guards.
The two flags on the wall are the national flag and the Communist party flag. Both are grafted from 4,000 pieces of rubies from Thanh Hoa province.
The body of Ho Chi Minh president lies in a glass case with dim lights. He is wearing the Kaki costume with a pair of rubber sandals.
The coffin is a work of art made by the craft master of the two countries Vietnam – Soviet. Beds are made from bronze with lotus patterns, and placed on a rock pedestal, with automatic lift system.
You can also see the sentence “Nothing is more precious than independence and freedom”, which is a well-known quote by President Ho Chi Minh.
Ba Dinh square is where Ho Chi Minh’s Mausoleum lies. Here on September 2nd, 1945 in front of thousands of Vietnamese people, President Ho Chi Minh read the Independence Declaration of Vietnam – marking the establishment of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam.
Ba Dinh means three communal houses. It is originally the name of a village in Thanh Hoa province (about 170 km from Hanoi) where the first resistance against the French colonialists of Vietnamese people took place.
When Hanoi got freedom, the Vietnamese government decided to give the name Ba Dinh to this district to remind of our brave history.
It would be a memorable moment if you could see Flag raising ceremony with military men perfectly dressed in their white uniforms, marching information at Ba Dinh square at 6am or the Flag lowering ceremony at 9 pm.
This is also a favorite place for the locals to have morning exercise or just simply take a walk around the beautiful square at night.
The building was designed and supervised by a German architect for the French IndoChina Governor. The construction project started in 1900 and completed in 1906 with 30 rooms and named as “IndoChina Governor Palace”.
In 1954 the building was renamed “the Presidential Palace” and Uncle Ho was supposed to live and work there. However, Ho Chi Minh refused to live here because “it is not suitable for his poor and starving people”.
Up to now, it is used for Vietnamese government to welcome many heads of states, high-ranking delegations of various parties and governments all over the world.
The Ho Chi Minh Museum is the preserver of everything related to President Ho Chi Minh. The Museum was started opening on 2nd September, in 1990, to celebrate the 100th birthday occasion of Ho Chi Minh.
The museum was built in the shape of a white lotus flower. It has a priceless collection of military orders, mementos, photos of the Communist Party’s earlier achievements, the great August and October revolutions, exhibits related to Ho Chi Minh’s political activities, etc.
The exhibition in the museum comprises three main contents:
Having an idea that this small and simple house wasn’t suitable for a President, Vietnamese government decided to build his own house.
Walking around, you can feel his simple and pure lifestyle in n wooden tiled house on stilts, surrounded by a garden which are full of fruit trees and a peaceful fish pond.
The house has two floors. The ground floor was the meeting place, and upstairs there were a bed room, a study room and a bookshelf.
Outside, there is a garden, and trees in this garden are from all over the country.
Besides, there was a fish pond in this garden. It was grown up firstly by Uncle Ho. Everyday around 4pm, he took a break by feeding his fish (anabas, golden carp).
He always came on time and clapped his hands, so these fish quickly learn a habit of hearing his voice and coming up on the water.
The house on stilts is an excellent example of uncle Ho’s simple life. The beloved President lived here from 1958 until he passed away.
The pagoda was built in 1049, under the reign of Ly Thai Tong. It was a group of structures consisting of a pagoda and a tower built in the middle of a square lake.
The pagoda looks like a lotus blossoming from the square pond.
This architecture was based on an interesting legend: “In the 11th century, King Ly Thai To was very old and had no son. Therefore, he often went to pagodas to pray for Buddha’s blessing so that he might have one. One night, he had a dream that he met the Goddess of Mercy, who was sitting on a lotus flower and gave him a pretty boy. Months later, the queen got pregnant and gave birth to a boy. To repay the gift from the Goddess of Mercy, the King ordered to construct a pagoda in the shape of a lotus, which was supported by only one pillar.”
Today, many couples come here and pray for a child.
The pagoda in Hanoi is not an original one but a rebuilt structure completed in April 1955 because of war.
The house used to belong to an electrician, who took care of the Governor Palace.
From 1954 to 1958, Uncle Ho lived and worked here. Most of the house facilities were the gifts from people all over the world.
Ho Chi Minh had never gotten married, so sometimes he was lonely.
Late in the afternoon, after everyone who was coming to visit him went back home, the radio was turned on until Uncle Ho went to bed. He needed to hear human voice around to warm him up.
After moving to live and work at the stilts house, he was still going back to the house 54 everyday for lunch, dinner and personal hygiene.
+ Hot season (from 1st April to 31st October): from 7:30 AM to 10:30 AM
(Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays: from 7:30 AM to 11:00 AM)
+ Cold season (from November 1 to March 31 of the following year): from 8:00 AM to 11:00 AM
Dress code and must-know things
How to get there: You can travel by private transports like car, motorbike or by a bus ride.
– If you travel by motorbike or car, follow Trang Thi road to the junction, then turn to Dien Bien Phu street. Go along Dien Bien Phu street is Ba Dinh square.
To find the parking lot, turn left to Le Hong Phong street (crossing Dien Bien Phu – Hoang Dieu 20m), go straight Le Hong Phong to Ngoc Ha street, you will see the entrance to Uncle Ho’s mausoleum here.
Bus No. 09: Direction: Hoan Kiem lake – Cau Giay – Bo Ho.
This bus can stop at 91 – 93 Le Hong Phong street, from here you can walk to Ngoc Ha to visit Uncle Ho’s Mausoleum.
Tips: It would be much easier for you if you had a friendly and enthusiastic tour guide who can provide helpful information while you are visiting these historical sites. Check it out our Free Tour.
Author: Kalyn Trịnh